5 Ingredient Pasta—Cacio e Pepe

  • Author: Tonja Engen



  • Kosher salt
  • 6 oz. pasta bucatini, or spaghetti
  • 3 Tbsp. unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 tsp. freshly cracked black pepper
  • 3/4 cup finely grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 cup finely grated Pecorino Romano


  1. Bring 3 quarts water to a boil in a large stock pot. Season with salt. Add pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until about 2 minutes before tender. Drain, reserving 3/4 cup pasta cooking water.
  2. Meanwhile, melt 2 Tbsp. butter in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Add pepper and cook, swirling pan, until toasted, about 1 minute. Turn off heat until ready to finish.
  3. Add 1/2 cup reserved pasta water to skillet and bring to a simmer. Add pasta and remaining butter. Reduce heat to low and add Parmesean, stirring and tossing with tongs until melted. Next add Pecorino, stirring and tossing until cheese melts, sauce coats the pasta, and pasta is al dente. (Add more pasta water if sauce seems dry.) Transfer pasta to warm bowls and serve.